FREUNDE releases “California”
FREUNDE. ‘s song “California” is a delightful ditty. Comprised of musicians Heiko Freund (Swiss) and Daniel Schwarz (American), the track represents all the good that is happening with combining the freshness of a pop song and inviting feel of an alternative country tune. The song is just over three-and-a-half minutes long and immediately grabs the listener to its sunny frame.
Kudos to FREUNDE. for collaborating on an easy-to-follow lyrical journey. While the chorus is bursting with harmonies and striking vocals, the lyrics are pretty straightforward. From what I gather, it’s about a girl taking on a journey to California to get out or return to someone (or she’s lost her way and searching to get back to her state-of-mind). Mixed with this theme, my mind wandered to first loves and finding oneself. However you interpret these words, FREUNDE. has this friendly tune and a warm disposition. Interestingly enough, the word ‘freunde’ means ‘friend’ in German.
What really fuels “California” is a strong music bed. The guitar riffs and tones in the track are mesmerizing. They’ve found a sound that hovers between a tinny rockabilly vibe (think Chris Isaak) with the bravado of the Bakersfield sound (think Dwight Yoakam) and they wrapped it up nicely with guitar fuzz (think The Flying Burrito Brothers).
Strangely enough, “California” feels as though it were recorded in one take. Yes, that’ the magic of a recording studio and computers. I just had this sense that they got what they wanted on the first take.
The result is this magical, eclectic song that certainly can draw an audience. If not for the so-so lyrics (they’re fine, not great), I think this song would be a great fit on any pop-Americana community station. To go further, it would be a great song to hear under a blanket of stars at an outdoor venue. One has to wonder if FRUENDE will perform live with so much distance between them on the map. Still, they managed to create a fine piece of musical work in “California,” who’s to say that they can’t rehearse separately and make it work.
On a side note, I’m also very curious as to why they place a ‘period’ after their name? Why FREUNDE. ? Does it mean, that their songs begin and end with friendship? Oh, bands and their names!
Overall, “California” from FREUNDE. should receive kudos and two, big thumbs up for creating an original, modern-sounding track. This song is begging to be heard and should be at the top 10 for any summer playlist. As many, many indie bands battle for recognition and attention, it’s refreshing to hear and discover new music that connects us all. FREUNDE., does just that—they connect instantly. No matter your state of mind, your geographical station, this song is fun and positive. I positively think you will enjoy “California.”
by Arthur Gilmore
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